Cosmological gravitational waves a new approach to the Big Bang

(ORDO NEWS) — Active observatories around the world are targeting areas of the sky characterized by low pollution from galactic radiation, looking for fingerprints of cosmological gravity waves (CGWs) generated during inflation, a mysterious phase of quasi-exponential expansion of space in the earliest universe.

A new study by the POLARBEAR Collaboration, led by SISSA on interpretation for cosmology, provides a new correction algorithm that allows researchers to almost double the amount of reliable data obtained at such observatories, thereby opening up access to uncharted territory of the CGV signal and bringing us closer. to the Big Bang.

“According to current understanding in cosmology, immediately after the Big Bang, the universe was very small, dense and hot. In 10-35 seconds, it stretched 1030 times,” explains Carlo Bacigalupi, coordinator of the Astrophysics and Cosmology group at SISSA.

“This process, known as inflation, gave rise to cosmological gravitational waves, which can be detected by the polarization of the cosmic microwave background left over from the Big Bang.

The POLARBEAR experiment is looking for such signals with the Juan Tran telescope in the Atacama Desert of northern Chile in the Antofagasta region.”

The analysis of data obtained by the POLARBEAR observatory is a complex process in which the reliability of measurements is the most subtle and key factor.

For the past two years, Anto. I. Lonappan, a SISSA graduate student, and Satoru Takakura of the University of Boulder, Colorado, characterized the quality of the extended POLARBEAR collaboration dataset, tracking all known instrumental and physical uncertainties and systematics.

We have implemented an algorithm that determines the accuracy of measurements in the “big spot” – an area extending approximately 670 square degrees in the southern celestial hemisphere, where our probe finds data that is consistent with data from other probes observing in the same place, such as BICEP2/Keck Array located at the South Pole,” they explain.

Large developments are on the way from an experimental point of view. A system of three upgraded POLARBEAR telescopes, known as the Simons Array, is under preparation.

The Simons Observatory, a new system of small and large aperture telescopes, will become operational nearby in the Atacama in 2023.

Later in the decade, the LiteBIRD satellite will fly, and an expanded network of ground-based observatories located in the Atacama Desert and the South Pole, known as “Stage IV”, will complement these observations.

“All these efforts will lead to the final measurement of the KGV, at the same time revealing the most important information about the cosmological components of dark energy and matter,” Bachigalupi concludes.

“Thanks to the main mission of SISSA as a postgraduate school that prepares students to work as young researchers, our institute is making and will make a significant contribution to solving the main modern problems of physics, such as the current one aimed at studying gravitational waves a tiny fraction of a second after the Big Bang. “.

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